How to Make New Year’s Resolutions for Your Business

The following is a post from Pat Mackaronis. Pat is the Director of Business Development for New York City-based social network Brabble. In this post, Pat speaks about ways one can make rock-solid resolutions that are geared towards success. Pat can be best reached on Twitter at @patty__mack.

January 1 is a great time to make a fresh start. I know so many people who refuse to make resolutions, simply because they’re sure they won’t follow through on them. But what if you could make resolutions that would increase, even double, your business income in 2010? There are some surefire ways to make sure your resolutions are rock-solid and geared toward success:

1. Make resolutions that are stated in the positive (but build in some reinforcements!).
When you write your resolutions, you want to state them in the positive, like “I will add new clients to my schedule each month,” instead of stating them in the negative, like, “I will stop losing clients and will not remain static in my client load.”

Now, here’s something most coaches won’t tell you: sometimes building in a little negative reinforcement works. For example, looking at a more personal goal of weight loss, if I want to lose weight, it’s probably because I want to be slim and fit and healthy and have lots of energy. But if we’re being completely candid, it’s probably also because I don’t want to break out of the seams of my new jeans, or because I don’t like feeling a little belly roll when I’ve overeaten. Sometimes we’re running toward a goal while we’re also running away from one. Just make sure you focus more of your intention on the goal you’re running toward.

2. Make resolutions that are measurable.
When you state a goal that’s measurable, it makes it easy for you to track your progress. Saying “I will add new clients to my schedule each month” is measurable- did you or didn’t you?- but it could be even better: “I will add 5 new clients each month” is much easier to track. If you added 2 clients and you’re two weeks into the month, you know exactly how much more work you need to do, whereas if you just leave the resolution undefined, you can just “get by” by adding a single client, because you’ve technically achieved your goal.

3. Make resolutions that are reasonable.
Want to actually achieve your resolution goals? Make them reasonable. “I’ll add 25 new clients each month” may not be a reasonable goal if, in your best month, you only added 8. But if you set your goal at 10, that might be a stretch, but something you could work for every month without getting totally discouraged and defeated.

4. Set up a timeline.
If you set a goal, it’s imperative that you set up a timeline so you create a feeling of deadline sensitivity and know you have to get to work immediately. Without a timeline, you’ll be more likely to let go of the goal without realizing it, as time passes by.

Once you make resolutions that are positive, measurable, and reasonable and give yourself a timeline, you’ll find it simple to create a plan to achieving them.

And now, here are some ideas for New Years Resolutions for your business- and some of these really do have the potential to double your income, if you employ them properly!

1. Launch a new product within a certain timeframe.
2. Spend two days every week marketing your company and expanding awareness.
3. Connect with like-minded entrepreneurs in a Mastermind group.
4. Find speaking engagements (you decide how and in what timeframe).
5. Eliminate one activity that doesn’t bring in income (you decide the timeframe).
6. Set a date to hire a mentor or consultant who can help you grow your business.
7. Delegate a set number of administrative tasks in the first 90 days of 2011.

Enjoy your New Years Resolution-making and have a fantastic, successful new year!